Sensory branding: the impact of sound on paying behaviors

July 19, 2018

When people purchase with their Visa card, they will now hear a signature sound through a mobile device or cash register. Visa is also launching a unique vibration and adding animation to its logo.

The unique tone is part of Visa’s effort to usher in a new era of mobile payments. (Click here to hear the tone )

With fewer people seeing the company’s logo at the cash register or using their logo-carrying credit cards at checkout, Visa wants to be heard when consumers make in-app purchases or use their phones to make payments in stores. While audio branding is hardly new (think Intel Inside and NBC), it’s gaining importance as consumers increasingly rely on voice assistance like Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home. Therefore, Visa wants a brand presence at point-of-sale, not just in TV ads or other marketing materials.

The creation and selection process, which took over a year, involved focus groups, three specialist agencies, and rounds of elimination to whittle down more than 200 different sounds.

It may prompt the question: What’s your audio brand? At 83bar, we’re thinking about this trend and looking into our own audio brand. Perhaps there is a sound that supports the success of completing one of our surveys or a welcome tone associated with the calls from one of our nurses, or a unique tone indicating an appointment has been made. We’ll let you know what comes of it and how it’s impacted the customer experience.